The Payments Council has announced that cheques will continue for as long as customers need them and the target for possible closure of cheque clearing in 2018 has been cancelled.
This change is as a result of public concern about the proposed phasing out of cheques by 2018. The issue has been of concern to many small businesses who continue to make payments by cheque and charities which receive substantial amounts of donations from the public by cheque.
According to the press release the:
‘The Payments Council Board will continue to focus on security, efficiency and encouraging innovation in all types of payments to ensure customers have options best suited to the 21st century.’
Richard North, the Chairman of the Payments Council said:
‘It’s in the DNA of the Payments Council to consult and listen to all those people who actually make payments and use cheques. Listening to over 600 stakeholder groups, working with the banks and following our appearance before the Treasury Select Committee, we have concluded we should reassure customers that the cheque is staying.’
‘Over the last two years we have learnt a great deal about what is important to our many stakeholders and we are really grateful to all of those groups and individuals who took the time to talk to us and help us reach this decision. We will use what we’ve learnt to keep improving existing systems, as well as introducing innovation, so that customers benefit from 21st century ways to pay. Innovation must be at the heart of what we do.’